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Early voting warrants more consideration

The members of the New York State Legislature recently drew the ire of many residents by rushing to pass a bill, a mistake that should not be repeated when it comes to the topic of early voting.

Members of both parties are looking at an early voting bill (Assembly Bill No. 689 and Senate Bill 1461), which would allow residents of New York state to vote as early as 14 days before the General Election in November and seven days before a primary election.

Something probably should be done to curb the trend of low voter turnout. We have to look no further than the village of Keeseville, which held a vote Jan. 22 that in large part determined the future of the municipality. In the end, village residents voted to dissolve their municipality by a total of 268 votes in favor of dissolution to 176 against. The residents spoke — or did they?

In total, 444 votes were cast in the matter, which can be seen as good voter turnout. However, there are 955 registered voters in the village and roughly 1,800 residents. There was not even a 50-percent turnout in a village vote that meant residents would never get to have another village vote.

We feel that this is a shame, that so few people cared about the fact that their way of life will certainly change. Whether it is for the better or for the worse is a debate that will still be had, but change it will, and only 46 percent of the registered voters in the town took the five minutes out of their lives to make their voices heard on one of the most important votes in the history of the village (made even more so because of the outcome). So, while we commend those who took to the polls, the majority of Keeseville residents should be ashamed of their apathy, expecially if their vote could have changed the outcome.

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